Episode 7: Quit Touching Meggan’s Purple Hair
In this episode of Awesome Etiquette
Megan has purple hair. Really, really purple hair. So purple that complete strangers want to touch it to see if it’s real or a wig. The Posts give her advice on how to deal with the personal space issues therein.
Speaker 1: Are you surprised to see a brand new podcast from us in your feed? Don't be. This is how it's gonna be with this episode, we are moving into being a weekly podcast, and we couldn't be more excited. More etiquette, more questions, more time with you.
Speaker 1: Maybe it's just that you don't know how to use Social courtesy that's old fashioned.
Speaker 1: Watch how busy
Speaker 2: post and Dan Post sending act is host and hostess.
Speaker 2: They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person.
Speaker 1: Really. Friendliness. Welcome, Thio. Awesome Etiquette, Part of the Infinite Guest Network. I'm Lizzie Post
Speaker 2: and I'm Dan Post sending from the Emily Post Institute.
Speaker 1: So about two weeks ago, Dan and I had one of our most favorite weeks of the year here at the Emily Post Institute, and that was our train, The Trainer Week, and we host two sessions. We host a business etiquette train, the trainer course and a Children's etiquette train. The trainer course, and what's really fantastic about it is that this is a chance for people to learn how to teach either business or Children's etiquette the way that we would teach business or Children's etiquette. in our seminars and workshops, and it truly is a time where sort of I would start by calling them strangers come into our lives. And they truly by the end of the four or five days of training that they do with us, feel like family become like family in our part of the Emily Post family. And it's It is such uncredible e intense week, And it's also one of the most exciting and encouraging weeks that we have. And Dan's actually one of our trainers. He trains the with along with his mother.
Speaker 2: I co teach with my mother, our Children's train, the trainer program. But I'm also a graduate of the program, as is Lizzie Post We We both took the program when it was first getting launched many years ago. Um, the business program was really developed by Lizzie's father, and we used to do them all over the country. We usedto do them regionally, but we found people traveled from all over the country all over the world, so we relocated them here in Vermont, and it really
Speaker 1: made it a lot easier has brought this homey feel
Speaker 2: to it. It really does feel like we get to invite people to our place to our home. They visit the office and come through some of our family photo albums. We call it the Archive, but that's sort of a grand name for a set of scrapbooks and old family photos.
Speaker 1: But they are in archive. I mean, Emily's old radio show scripts are so much fun. She was a master gardener and her gardening journalists their
Speaker 2: their personal notes on
Speaker 1: the dahlias. And, you know all of the books that she wrote we have a copy of every single one and eso yeah, it kind of really isn't archive. It
Speaker 2: is. It's And, um what for me, one of the most fun parts of the week is, ah, concluding dinner that we do it. Ah, lovely local restaurant. I'll mention them by name, the kitchen table. They're phenomenal. And, uh, there's a moment that I look forward to in the training each year where we're all sitting around a long table and Peter Post Lizzie's father stands up at the end of the meal, and I hope I'm not giving away. Ah, spoiler alert. If you plan on coming to our training sometime, pretend that you don't hear this next
Speaker 1: part stands
Speaker 2: up and he offers a toast, and I look forward to it every session because, um, Peter has has a warm heart. He's a sentimental man, and the toast comes out a little different every time. But one of the themes that really emerges is is welcome to the family, and and he thanks everyone for coming and and encourages them to go forth and continue to spread the word about good etiquette to take it to communities in places, sometimes globally, where we we just personally can't reach ourselves our or don't. But this is This is one of the ways that that we really get to share this tradition and good etiquette with so many people in a really special way. So we just got to do it. So it's really on our mind right now.
Speaker 1: It is. So tell me, because Dan was obviously he's teaching in the Children's training this year and I actually spent a lot of time at the business training this year, which typically I'll do. I've done the business training before and so I'll do a lot of the background and support work and kind of hold down the office while Anna and Peter do the business training and Cindy and Dan do the Children's training. But this year I actually re attended, Um, in the hopes Thio have kind of a better handle on the program and redo our e learning, um, less learning courses. Excuse me, and I was so glad that this was the group. And every group we have is awesome, and it's true. But when you spend a week with them and when you're just hot off that week, you just You always think they are the best week, the best group ever. And in this particular group, I just absolutely had never seen this happen before. Marquees got up to do his presentation. You have to do practice presentation. So as you're learning the material, you get maybe five or six slides that you've gotta practice on and we film you and there's a critique of it, and it's it's not scary. It's a very supportive thing. It's like, Yeah, they everyone is nervous about it. And I will tell you, you can go on our on our YouTube channel and you can see videos of people saying that this turned out to be their favorite part of the entire session, and marquees got up there and he I swear to you, everyone in that room said they thought that they were in some kind of the most jubilant, excited church group they had ever been in. He got from word one out of his mouth when he said Good morning to you all, and he was like, Let me hear how you all doing this morning and people were like, Good, you know, they also because, no, let me hear you. Everyone's like, good and they're throwing their hands up in here. I mean, I've never seen a train. The trainer group Mawr, captivated by a presenter on their first try at presenting it, was phenomenal and that
Speaker 2: that is special. I've seen people bring the audience to tears, but sentimental tohave holding their sides is to take takes a special brand. No question that this was a unusual group in that regard,
Speaker 1: you know, they were they were really killer. What about years? Was there any standout moment from the Children's group? This Children's group was a little
Speaker 2: quieter this year, but we had a really good time. It was my my mother and I co teach
Speaker 1: it. One of
Speaker 2: the most fun things for me was there was a woman in the Children's program who had done the business program years before, and she has her own Children now and had come to do the Children's program. But she's just finding that's the sphere of her wife. Where her interest is is now was with With Children, Um, and it was really It was really sweet toe watch her transition, that grown up material in tow, into the world of Children
Speaker 1: that would be accessible to kids and and kind of hair it down from
Speaker 2: the business. And and she's been She's been out in the world teaching for years now, and she has a real clarity about in terms of her understanding of the material on the topics and the way that translated into the Children's material was um was really satisfying.
Speaker 1: It's really fun when you wind up with an alumni of one of the programs in the other program because there are differences between the two programs. I mean, obviously the material is geared for completely different age groups, but the core values of the programs are the same, and it is really fun to watch someone be able thio home that material towards their audience. In this way
Speaker 2: it does, and it brings for me some clarity on what those core values are. And it reminds me of our first episode of this podcast where we talk about
Speaker 1: consideration, respect and honesty.
Speaker 2: Aziz the guiding principles for for the etiquette that we that we teach
Speaker 1: well, the train, the trainer course was definitely, it's it's exhausting, and it's amazing all at once, and we're so grateful to our trainees. And who knows? Maybe we'll get you in one of our sessions one day.
Speaker 2: I think the next one will be in the lovely spring weather. We're gonna get through this difficult winter.
Speaker 1: Don't don't predict the winter is gonna be difficult. Let's pretend. I mean, it's 74 degrees here in Vermont today,
Speaker 2: maybe the last true beautiful day of fall. I hope there's a few more, but today certainly
Speaker 1: fingers crossed. Hey, let's get to some of your questions.
Speaker 1: Sure, you're right.
Speaker 1: There's so much to learn. How todo Sure, there's a lot to learn, but it's worth it. And learning is easy. One way is by watching others on every episode of awesome etiquette. We take your questions on how to behave. This question comes from Simca.
Speaker 1: We were invited to my nieces upcoming wedding in Quebec. We were quite shocked to see that there was a charge of $70 per person to attend the wedding and reception, which includes the meal and an open bar. Have you ever heard of this practice before? Also, I know that you say that one shouldn't base a gift on the per person costs. But should we adjust our gift down from our normal amount? As this is different circumstances, it seems like it would be unfair to our other nieces and nephews who have all paid for their weddings. If we both pay for our meals and give the same gift amount, though, I can also see the other side of the argument
Speaker 1: as we would give the same amount if they had spent $10 per plate or we would give the same amount if they had spent $100 per plate.
Speaker 1: Just this time we happen to know their spending $70 a plate.
Speaker 1: Ah, few of our younger relatives won't even be attending because of the cost. Should anyone mention the reason for them not attending to see if the couple wishes to cover them.
Speaker 2: I can hear the gasps.
Speaker 1: I know, right? This is, uh, yeah. So so far in Emily. Post etiquette and our brands of etiquette. No, you never asked someone to pay to attend your wedding.
Speaker 2: We'll start from square one, and absolutely that this is not an emerging tradition that we've heard anything about.
Speaker 1: Not only that, but it wouldn't be one that we would advise as being an okay
Speaker 2: tradition. Generally speaking, the host pace. That's the plan and the wedding. Being one of the classic examples where you're really deferring to that more formal behavior, you want to plan a wedding that you can afford. You wanna plan and and manage costs in a way that you, as the host can can manage that.
Speaker 1: Right now, I have attended weddings that are quote unquote destination weddings. Where there is because of either the resort or the venue that we're going thio. There's kind of an all inclusive cost. But what is never included in that cost on the guest is the if they're invited to the rehearsal dinner, the rehearsal dinner cost would be removed for them, and the reception cost and
Speaker 2: open bar cost would be removed for
Speaker 1: them. For instance, I went to a wedding earlier this summer. It was at a summer camp, and I paid for my bus ticket down, and I paid for my lodging and the food not associated. So they had breakfast, and lunch is set up for us every day. But the entire guest list was invited to the rehearsal dinner. That was it was made very clear that the rehearsal dinner in the reception were not in included, nor were they things that we were expected to participate in paying
Speaker 2: for. I think that's a great point that you're you're expecting travel expenses and lodge. Those include lodging you associated with, and oftentimes those air are considered in our part of the package where there's some kind of
Speaker 1: special. But this is different. This is this is not that circumstance. And no, you should. They Okay, so we've established they shouldn't be asking for this. What should you do? I think this is really up to you. If you no matter what the gift that you give should always be based on your own budget. So if you have a budget of $250 per niece or nephew that you're going to spend and they're charging you $7.70 dollars to go to the wedding well, maybe your gift is $70 less. Well, E and boy, it's up to you.
Speaker 2: Our intentions are so important in this world, and I think this is a great example where, um, I think it's really important to look at yourself and look at your intentions. And you don't wanna to respond in a spiteful way. You don't wanna match one gesture with another. Well, if they're gonna charge me, then I'm gonna. But if
Speaker 1: you've really
Speaker 2: got a budget, that's what I'm saying. And what you're operating from is a place where you have a certain amount of free and available money and $70 is going towards something. If your intention isn't toe operate out of anger or spite, but really just to stay within your own budget, I think that's reasonable. Um, I also think that the follow up question they ask is really important. Should someone talk to this couple about it, and that's a really difficult one, because it's always hard to talk to someone else about, um, their behavior,
Speaker 1: their choices, especially around finances. The same time this is close family
Speaker 2: and friends. And if there are people who aren't attending because of the cost because they're either insulted or they can't afford it, it might be important for the couple to know it and figuring out a way to get them. That message, um, might being willing to face the awkwardness of doing that and figuring out way out a way to do it well might be helpful to them. They might wanna put aside a little money for people that can't attend because they can't afford
Speaker 1: it. What would it be? And that's I
Speaker 2: think, like any difficult conversation you ask, Permission toe. Have it. So you say, you know, there's something really difficult that I'd like to talk to you about. Is there a time when we could do that? Or and you might even mention that it's about the wedding? You know, there's something that's come up in regards to the wedding. It's a little difficult that I'd like to talk to you about and, um, pretend that you were in the other position and think about how you would like to be approached. That's another thing that could be really helpful. When you're approaching a difficult conversation, get get common yourself. Say to yourself, You know, if this were me, I would want to know about it. And I want to hear about it from someone who who cared about my position and took took into account ahead of time, my intelligence and my goodwill. So they approached me and said, You know, you might not be aware of this, but there are a few people who, upon receiving your invitation, maybe don't use the language of upon receiving your invitation
Speaker 1: Well, but that is
Speaker 2: the truth
Speaker 1: of the matter.
Speaker 2: Found, founded, um, founded awkward, and they weren't really sure what to do are I didn't like being asked to pay or can't afford to pay an art attending that
Speaker 1: I would I would go more for the for the you know, um, the kids would love to come, but unfortunately they can't afford the $70 fee that you're asking because I don't think saying they were offended or they were felt awkward or they felt imposed upon its those things. They're all true. But that starts to get back at that. And this is so what Dan and I are doing right now is exactly what you should do is tested out. How does it sound? What? You know, like as soon as you go into X territory on it, do you Do you feel your shoulders go up a bit or tense a bit? Do you feel that That kind of like clutching your stomach or your throat? That's the indication that you haven't quite found the right wording yet, and I'm not even sure that my wording is the correct wording. But if you if you say it and you feel any of those things coming up, you might want to just try to find another way. And if you can't find another way, then it's just something you let go. If there are plenty of weddings that I have been invited to, that I have had to say no to, because I could not afford the plane ticket to get down there. I couldn't afford the time off from work because they did it at a difficult time of year. And those air just realities. And one thing that this couple has done in choosing to charge people for their wedding is they have they have chosen to accept the fact that some people might not be okay with that. I mean, I don't think anybody it is so not a common thing to see on a wedding invitation. First of all, what drives me nuts about it is that when an invitation is supposed to be about inviting the guest, it is not supposed to be about finances and how much it's gonna cost for you to get there. It's not supposed to be about gifts. Really rarely is it ever even about a tire? It is just about saying this is one of the most important decisions I'm about to make. And I want you there. That is the point of a wedding invitation. It's why you don't have inserts. It's why you don't have anything come with that wedding invitation other than the invite itself. So
Speaker 1: when they're asking for this money for the wedding to help cover the cost of the wedding, they I find it, um, true to what Dan said earlier. I'm going to respect your intelligence. You must know that some people aren't going to be able to do this. Probably right. You gotta know that this might not go over too well with some people
Speaker 1: and they've accepted it and then moved forward at the same time. I know wedding people get like people. People get funky about it, but and one other
Speaker 2: thought before we leave it that because just in thinking about the best way toe toe approach this, um, a Zai was searching for that correct language. I found myself talking about the way other people were feeling. And that's always difficult to say. You know, someone else might be offended. It's always good to take responsibility for your own feelings. I'm reminded of my mother's advice when you I feel statement. When I received this invitation, I felt bothered or upset at being asked to pay. I think then you're not saying that that they made you do anything, but you're acknowledging the way you feel and you're you're describing the action that that was the start of that.
Speaker 1: So the only my only problem with that is that if if you say that and then attend the wedding.
Speaker 1: There's this kind of bizarre dark cloud over your attendance, and I would instead, So the question is, a few of our younger relatives won't be able to attend. Do we mention the reason for them not attending? I think that if you are close with with the bride and groom, if you're close with the bride and groom's parents, who are often the actual hosts of the event that it's OK to say, You know, Carol and Jim just couldn't afford it and they wish they could be there. But it's it's not gonna happen this time. You don't have to say they couldn't afford the $70 you're charging them, you jerk like, you know, and we know you'd never say you jerk, but that that that would be the way to say it to them. Don't mention that it's specifically in regards to the $70 but just say, you know, they if, and that's a long as as your son and daughter, some of these younger relatives air okay with you even mentioning it, they might not want you to, and it is okay to just declined because you can't. And I don't think that berating this couple for what they've chosen to do is going to do anything in the long run. I mean, their parents have probably gotten behind this or if they haven't are not happy about it like it's. I think you just got to say, Okay, we're gonna go.
Speaker 1: You're going to decide whether or not you have the budget to do that normal $100 gift or whether it's going to be a $30 gift because your budget is now lower and, you know, you're just going to say Jim and Carol couldn't afford to come or they couldn't come. They wish they could be here, and that's it. But
Speaker 2: that's great advice.
Speaker 1: I don't think we should. I don't think we should hammer the bride and groom with with how they should have done this right. They just didn't get it right, and they made that choice, and now they might have a smaller wedding because
Speaker 2: of it. Can you tell? Lizzie is the co author on the wedding
Speaker 1: book. She's
Speaker 2: good at this stuff
Speaker 1: anyway. Good luck, and I do hope you have a lot of fun at the wedding.
Speaker 1: So
Speaker 2: our next question comes from Jennifer. She begins. Hello. I'm so glad that you have started this podcast because I've been wanting to find a polite response to a situation that I was in recently. However, it is also one that I hope I won't be in again.
Speaker 2: During an opera last summer, the man behind me coughed without covering his mouth, while something like this hardly qualifies for calling in the etiquette police. In this case, the force of the cough was so strong that it literally and I mean literally, not figuratively blew my hair forward.
Speaker 2: Obviously, I didn't say anything to him. Coughs can pop out when we least expect it, and you get a lot of nasty stares when you talk, even quietly during an opera,
Speaker 2: however, then he did it again and my hair blue forward again. I didn't say anything. Unfortunately, I was blasted yet a third time. The virus hovering in his germy cough got me a couple of days later.
Speaker 2: So my question to you is this. Surely it was rude of him. Toe let rip such humongous coughs without covering his mouth. But wouldn't it have been even ruder of me to ask him to cover his mouth. On the other hand, had I risk seeming rude, perhaps I wouldn't have gotten his cold.
Speaker 2: For the record, I looked around to see if I could move to another seat, but couldn't because the opera was sold out. I hope that you could give me some guidance. Thank you, Jennifer.
Speaker 1: Oh, that's just It's such a bummer because she's she is in that position of It's very hard to correct a stranger's behavior, and she understands that she's also in a place where you are not supposed to talk at all. And it's one of the few places left where it's really bad form where it's, like, really, truly bad form. Um, at the same time, from Cough one, you could have gotten that cold. So it doesn't matter whether he coughed one story cough four times or five times. It's your at risk, so I don't think you could have prevented the cold no matter what. But
Speaker 1: I do think that after the second time I probably would have turned around and motioned.
Speaker 2: It's exactly what I was thinking that the power of the glance, and maybe even the gesture That covering
Speaker 1: your mouth? Yeah, like putting a hand to your mouth and just, you know, and with a sympathetic like like, like, kind of a puppy dog eyes like, Oh, I like that. I oftentimes
Speaker 2: think of the reproachful glance.
Speaker 1: Yeah, I know that's what naturally
Speaker 2: you look and you sort of like, give them a little bit of a ger. But I love this sympathetic like, Oh, the Lizzie's giving me these puppy dog eyes with a hand over about Could you please and, um, I think that makes a lot of sense.
Speaker 1: And the only other thing I can say is that we we do often say that if you're in a public place where there is something like an usher or some staff member of the facility that you could go to if there really is a problem, that that is the best way to address it because I go back to the crazy story in L. A of the movie theater and the guy, this is the craziest etiquette story I've ever heard. Someone was using their cell phone in a movie theater and guy turns turns to the person using it and said you know, can you turn it off or whatever it was, he said. And the next thing you know, the people using the cellphone went out to their car. Apparently, they've been shopping at a kitchen store, went next door and bought it. So they went to the kitchen store next door and bought a meat thermometer, came back and stabbed the guy who had mentioned to them in the throat with a meat
Speaker 2: thermometer. Horrible, horrible,
Speaker 1: like, I mean, really horrible. So that's our cautionary tale of why it's always dangerous to approach anybody. You just don't know how disturbed or sort of unstable they could be. Absolutely. And it's why we always say, if there is a staff
Speaker 2: member for you to go to to go to
Speaker 1: that staff member. But I think that turning around with a gentle and sympathetic face and covering your mouth and just, you know, kind of saying, Please so would work.
Speaker 2: We're not at our our segment where we talk about our etiquette. Faux paws are confessional, but this story is your confession to something that happened to me this weekend, and I wanted to share it. Um, I was traveling. I was on a plane. I was returning. Actually, I was leaving Vermont. Doesn't matter which direction,
Speaker 1: but business etiquette seminar
Speaker 2: was off doing a seminar, and I I'm recovering from a bit of a head cold and I sympathize with this person. It's horrible to get a cold Thio even be pretty sure you know where you got it? Um but I knew I would be coughing and sniffling on the plane. I had my cough drops. I had my Kleenexes and the woman sitting next to me. I could just see the fear in her eyes. I was We were you know, these these planes were getting smaller and smaller. We're sharing a very confined space. And I was I was doing my best to not be that germy coffee person. At the same time, there were a couple coughs that snuck up on me. And after the second one happened, she turned to me and she said, Could I've just gotta ask Could you please make an effort to cover your mouth when you cough and I waas?
Speaker 1: I
Speaker 2: was trying to I thought I had been I even wanted to say I'm trying. I think I did but I didn't I said, Absolutely, I will make an effort and I doubled my efforts from that point forward. But particular right now, where people are really concerned about germs, it's the it's the season. Um, I I sympathized with her. If I had been sitting next to me, I might have been inclined to say something. So I do think that it's okay to turn and make that gesture. We were on a plane where it was okay to talk. I did not take a fence at it. So being on the other side of this recently, I, um I do sympathize, and I do think you could get away with saying a little something, and I think most people who are out and about dealing with that will be understanding.
Speaker 1: Just watch out for the meat thermometers. Todo
Speaker 1: This next question comes from Rachel and I love it because it's about man's best friend, and my my best friend, is right next to me. Here. Benny Boys in the is in the studio with us is always,
Speaker 1: Rachel writes. My best friends have a two year old dog who is a pointer lab pitbull mix. They rescued him as a puppy, and they've done a beautiful job training him and are very conscientious dog owners. Their dog, in general is well behaved and well meaning, but he's £80 and loves to play. I have a little dog who's £12. I don't feel comfortable with our dogs hanging out. They have asked on many occasions to bring him to our house for dinners. We're going on a trip together, and they keep mentioning that they're going to bring him along.
Speaker 1: They have lots of friends who have dogs at for them before. I don't know how to talk to them about this without invalidating how hard they've worked on their dog. Well behaved or not, having a giant dog around is tough. Rachel. It is tough, and it's it's tough because you are recognizing that they've done a great job. But this dog still is much more active than you're comfortable having your dog be around.
Speaker 1: So what does Rachel do? This is a
Speaker 2: really tricky question because people are so close to their dogs and have such strong feelings about our our four legged friends, man's best friend, some people say. At the same time, it's really important before you go on vacation with someone else or another couple or a group of people that you talk ahead of time about, um, the major details of the travel, whether that's the modes of transportation or who's going to be paying for what are or what the expectations are around the lodging or, um, whether or not everyone is appropriate attire for a formal dinner, it could be all kinds of details. And whether or not you're gonna bring dogs or even kids, um, are things that really should be discussed ahead of time. They should be discussed clearly and candidly, so that you can really enjoy that time that you spend together and and and enjoy it to the fullest without a lot of tension and difficulty, because someone brought a dog that's a bother to everybody else there, Um,
Speaker 1: and I think part of her worry is okay, so if she brings it up, is that going to create tension
Speaker 2: from the get go boy? An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Do it, get it over with. Get through with your your coming out the other side before the before the vacation starts.
Speaker 1: I think you're right, though. I mean off like we don't know whether Rachel is intending on bringing her dog on this trip, and it is sort of it's easier to travel with a £12 dog. But I will say that regardless of whether it's easier if you're gonna ask someone to leave their dog at home, I think the easiest way to do that is to just say, Let's make this a no
Speaker 2: dogs trip. I think that makes so much that it's a great way to open the discussion.
Speaker 1: Um, it's in terms of eso. So that's the vacation. And and you shouldn't feel uncomfortable about broaching the subject. But, you know, you can even start by saying, I know you've mentioned a number of times that, you know, think you're excited for Rover to be on the
Speaker 2: trip knowledge, those things you've heard
Speaker 1: before, we actually go. I want to talk to you about it because I was really hoping this could be a dog free trip. And you know, we're planning on putting fluffy in the kennel or having a dog sitter, and we think that just for for ease and for comfort that that would be a lot better for us on this trip. And we were hoping that that would be something you guys
Speaker 2: would be open Thio. If you approached me that way, I'd be ready to listen.
Speaker 1: Adi Least ready to listen. And if if they're not okay with it, you could say then, you know, um, we really want you to have a good time, But we have to really reconsider whether we're going to go if that's truly how strongly you feel about it. And that might be a way for you to be figuring out whether this is a deal breaker on
Speaker 2: this trip for you be willing to negotiate as far as you are, but know what your limits are and what your hard lines are before you go into that discussion. I think that's also good advice.
Speaker 1: And a lot of people worry that. If so, let's say it is a deal breaker. They're gonna bring their dog. You just are not okay with it. You guys are gonna back out of the trip. I think one of the best things that you could do is be sure to say just so that there are no hard feelings. Be sure to go out to dinner with them. Eliminate the whether or not they come over to your house with their dog issue by taking it outside of the home, a place where the dog can't come and make sure to have some kind of a social interaction with them. Um, either just before the trip or just after the trip, so that they understand that this was just about the dog and it wasn't about your friendship with them. You can. And truthfully, this is one of those things where you throw it out there. And, yeah, you could lose a friendship over it. You really could. Some people are really emotional in that way where Nope, they don't like our dog. I don't like them like, and that's just it. And so consider that when when you go to make that line, consider whether or not you could really handle a week with the dog. Because would you rather the friendship, or would you rather a week with dog like what's where What is
Speaker 2: most important to you in this situation? Although I love the idea of also really thinking about ways that you can support and grow that friendship outside this particular difficulty and having those ideas. That hand will go a long way towards illustrating how serious you are about about caring about the friendship
Speaker 1: right now in regards to the dinners and having this dog come over to your house for dinner and that they automatically are inviting your You are the owner of your home and you are the host and it is okay just the same way. As you would say, I'm sorry, but I'd really love for tonight to be just adults. It's okay for you to say, you know, you know that I love Rover. He's awesome. But it's just a little easier for me to host when I'm not worried about or thinking about the dogs playing and what's their interactions and just kind of how excited and active he is. And so I'd really love it. If when we do dinner, it could just be about us having good time together and and leave the dogs at home. I hope that helps Rachel and good luck. That is not an easy conversation toe have.
Speaker 2: And I'm sorry. If that means you can have to leave your dog behind to go on vacation also, but got to consider. You gotta be prepared for that as well. So good luck with the conversation and have a great trip.
Speaker 2: Our next question comes from a listener, Meghan, and she writes,
Speaker 1: My hair is bright purple and has been for many years now. It's part of my personal identity as well as part of my branding for my business. I live in a small town about an hour outside of Seattle, Washington, and split my time between the two places. Both the small town in the big city culture in the P N. W has many things in common, including people stopping me over my hair.
Speaker 1: And by stop me, I mean that at least two times a day, someone will come up to tell me that my hair is beautiful, which don't get me wrong. It's really nice, but it also begins to feel invasive after a while. By the end of the day, I feel really guilty about just wanting to be left alone. What's more, sometimes people touch me. I still can't believe that that actually happens, but this happens about once a month where a stranger will come up and touch my hair as they tell me that they love it. I have no idea how to respond to these people. Someone touched my hair yesterday in the street from behind to see if it was a wig. I honestly thought I was being robbed and the encounter ruined my whole evening. The secret, however, is that one of my best friends is a hair stylist and uses me as a billboard for her skill set. So my hair is part my style and part advertisement for my really good friend. If she wasn't a stylist, my hair would still be purple, but probably not look as nice toe warrant so much attention. I always feel like it's my responsibility to be nice and answer questions because it often ends with me passing out my friends business card. However, all too often I have missed my bus or been late to appointments because of people's enthusiasm, I feel like the conversation is never quick enough and takes my attention away from my work or what I'm trying to accomplish. Its been enough strange encounters for me to believe that it must be in the way I am handling it, that is causing three awkwardness I love. I love that. That she's she's considering her own behavior within it. After all, I am the common denominator between all of these encounters. I don't want to change my hair or ignore these positive yet still awkward situations. My questions are How can I talk to these people and keep the conversations with strangers quick, unless awkward, Do have a responsibility to share my friends contact info with everyone who stops me. Do I have to engage with overly friendly people who touch my hair without asking if this were happening to you? How would you lead and then quickly end the conversation? Also, this is weird, right? Or, um, I like being too sensitive to what is happening. How would you respond to it? What's a good, quick way to have that conversation while giving credit to a friend with being able to get along with my life? We decided that this question was so fantastically awesome that we had to get Meghan on air for it. Meghan, and welcome. Before we dive any deeper, Meghan, tell us when was the last
Speaker 2: time someone touched your hair. Has it been
Speaker 1: a day? Was it today? It was yesterday. Unbelievable. On you know what else? So it was actually really nice because I was actually having a really bad day. And I was sitting in my car buying and got out, and a little girl came up and said that my hair was magical and I was like, Oh, see, that's what I love it magical. And there's and there is a positive side to it. I mean, I I actually had purple hair at 1.2 on Dan doesn't because it was a long, long, long time ago. Mine probably wasn't as vibrant as yours. It wasn't as noticeable. But, um, it is when you have something different, it's out there. And I love the fact in your question that you own the fact that hey,
Speaker 1: I have something that's different and special. And it's just like if I had plugs or an interesting facial tattoo or something, you do it. It's going to get noticed. So you recognize what comes with that I'm s O. But what fascinates me is that this is interfering with your life. You're missing Busses because you're because you're talking with people about your hair.
Speaker 1: Do you ever I was actually we just had some family portrait taken and we got interrupted multiple times throughout the portrait session with people stopping us to talk about my hair. And my photographer was getting really irritated because way we're on a little bit of time, and it just it's so weird because you want to give these people the information and talk to them, and they're being nice. I don't wanna be saying to them, but you also
Speaker 1: I want to move on, and I'm guessing this was a photo shoot that was outside in a public place or something. Yeah,
Speaker 1: so, yeah, I've got a
Speaker 2: couple and and it's it's such a great long example. I want to go back and just take your questions. One by one. I was doing, uh I was going through your question with my mother and and she she has such practical, solid advice that I thought we'd we'd answer your questions sort of one after another, and then we do, Ah, a little bit more discussion about some of those answers. So the first question you asked is how do I talk to these people and keep the conversation quick and less awkward. And my mother teaches our Children's etiquette program. And one of the points that we often make is that magic words are magic and their magic, cause they do all kinds of things and everybody remembers, Please, and thank you and thank you is a great magic word to start with, you acknowledge the compliment. You thank them for it. But then
Speaker 1: you move
Speaker 2: on to another magic word, which is Pardon me or excuse me, and those words are going to get you out of all kinds of awkward and difficult situations. They're gonna give the person some indication that the exchanges over thank you so much. I worked really hard on it. If you'll excuse me, I've just got to catch this bus or we're in the middle of a photo shoot right now, or pardon me,
Speaker 2: I'm thinking about the weather. Whatever that other thing might be. Um, that that you're magic words. Thank you. And excuse me or pardon me, are are some of your best friends toe to keep it tight and to stay within the, uh, the politically acceptable and socially acceptable territory here,
Speaker 1: and I think it'll just help you shorten all of that. Is that Did you feel comfortable with that? Do you feel like you could say thank you? You know, if I came up to you Wow, your hair is just That's the most beautiful purple I've ever seen, you know, do you feel like you could say to me right at that point before I start asking you questions? Thank you so much. You'll have to excuse me. I have to have to be on my way.
Speaker 1: Absolutely. I actually have not thought of keeping it that short before. Almost embarrassed. We're going to tell you that it is okay. Especially because these air strangers and you're in a rush. And they're so shocked by the hair so excited by the hair that I think often they forget it. And and most people will wind up saying Oh, of course, of course. And just let you go on your way. So your second question, um, was Do you have a responsibility to share your friends contact info with everyone who stops me? Absolutely not. You do not. Your your friend is the one responsible for marketing her business and I admit my one of my nearest and dearest friends does my hair. I am a deep Burnett and she keeps me a beautiful shade of blonde, and I often get get asked about my hair and sometimes it z who does it and I wait. The only time I really share it is if someone really wants the information. And if if they're really asking, that's when I'll say, you know, breathe at home. She does my hair and she's fabulous and and go look her up on book it. But you can keep that short to you. Do not have to make that something long you can. Also, before they get to that point, use your thank you and excuse me, and I would. Even if you've got
Speaker 2: more time and you don't mind, you can offer it. You can volunteer exactly, but particularly if it's if it's one of those days where you're staying on a schedule and or even just if you don't have the mental space for it that day, like Lizzie says, it's not your responsibility to go there.
Speaker 1: It's it's really okay and don't get me wrong. I love being able to share with, like most of my girlfriends. Now, go to my stylist because, you know, you've just shared and I say she does such a fabulous job. Here you go. Um, but I don't if I don't like dance. And I think I think this is the great phrase for it is if you don't have the mental space for it because sometimes you have the time. But gosh, darn it, you just don't don't wanna have the conversation with a stranger. It's OK established because it becomes invasive, even though it's a positive encounter. After a while, it just becomes right a little bit much. Yeah, definitely. Right. So I really appreciate that, but I don't have the responsibility to do that every time. You don't have to do it every single time. You don't you don't have to. I mean, unless she's given you free all the time and really hooking it up for you. You don't have to be her personal marketing machine.
Speaker 2: Um, and I'll take us onto the next question. Meghan, and that's do I have to engage with overly friendly people who touch my hair without asking Boy, if someone was touching me without asking, I would go to another magic word. Excuse
Speaker 1: me. Excuse me. Pardon me,
Speaker 2: Onda. With that tone of voice,
Speaker 1: let her know that it's a different magic word of please and then followed by the assertive words. Stop
Speaker 2: establishing that boundary is okay. Also, you're you're never expected. Thio. Oh boy, It's like I almost can't even say it because it's it's really not. Not acceptable.
Speaker 1: Americans tend to have a personal space of about 18 inches is the closest we want someone to us and 18 inches 23 ft is what we're comfortable with. Um, we're we're not like other cultures where getting right in and touching is okay, And it is perfectly OK for you to say Please don't. Uh if someone tugged my hair from behind, I would definitely turn around. Like you said, I would think I was being robbed. I would turn around with a look on my face. That was like, What the heck are you doing?
Speaker 2: I know Lizzie. They might get more than that.
Speaker 1: Yeah, it's true. I mean, etiquette. World aside, like you touch me, you're done. And it's def. It's definitely OK for you. Anyone who touches you at random in public. It is okay for you to be done with that immediately and just simply turn around and say, Please don't and walk away.
Speaker 2: Although I do have to say to I think it's really sweet how it seems like you're really generous with yourself. And I could just picture you with this this child yesterday who's just
Speaker 1: difference in a state of
Speaker 2: all with with your purple nous,
Speaker 1: you're not gonna put your dukes up to a five year old, but it Z um, I love I love. Well, your next. Your next question was, if this were happening to you, how would how would you lead and then quickly end the conversation? And I feel like I feel like we've let you know that. But I love your next question. Also, this is weird, right? Yes, it is totally weird. It's so weird that this is having this much of an effect. It's like E. I mean, it's one of the reasons I love the questions so much. It's different and and thank you
Speaker 2: for bringing us a question that that really feels very contemporary. I I think your question, um, speaks to a generation that's used to informality and is usedto really broad, broad standards and people really expressing themselves in all kinds of ways. And I think it's fantastic. And
Speaker 1: I'm curious as to what? How do you How do you feel about now you've gotten You've gotten some thoughts on it from the two of us? Like, how do you think tomorrow is going to go? Uh huh. Well, I hope I would remember everything, actually, um, that's what's great. It's recorded in a podcast. Does? Yeah, I think, um, I'm excited about that. I don't have a responsibility to share the information unless I feel like it. Then in the head space that it z still being a good friend to my friend as well as being respectful to myself in my face. And, um and I'm glad that it was weird. I've been seeing people for like, I think that has been purple for, like, four years or something like that. And I've been dealing with this for a long time, trying to really figure out the polite way to handle it because I don't want people. I don't ever want to put people down. And I don't want people to think. Oh, people with purple hair or me or something like that. I don't want to start that because
Speaker 1: I don't like That's not my personality. And I just e no. Yeah, It's so clear just from talking to you that you have such a good heart and good intentions. And that's so much what good etiquette is about. So I have no problem with giving you the advice toe do things like Play the Thank you so much. You'll have to excuse me card, because I feel like you'll be able to deliver that in a very friendly and believable way. And that's that's what matters. It's all in how you actually say it. And I just just from talking to you, it sounds like you're gonna be able to do that. Really, really well.
Speaker 1: Well, thank you. I appreciate the confidence. I'm looking forward to getting to try it tomorrow. Probably good.
Speaker 2: Good luck, Meghan. And thanks for spending the time with us.
Speaker 1: Thanks. Thank you so much for anything. My question. I really appreciate it. You're welcome. Take care. E.
Speaker 1: What you see
Speaker 1: is what we owe nothing more.
Speaker 1: Nothing less.
Speaker 1: Oh, you
Speaker 2: want to see a photo of Meghan with her amazing hair. We have one up at Infinite Guest or
Speaker 1: thanks to everyone for sending in your questions,
Speaker 2: you can submit your question toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com Before you wear your
Speaker 2: if you want
Speaker 2: e o what's gonna get?
Speaker 1: Yeah.
Speaker 1: So I came across in Esquire magazine. John Mariani had a piece on a Gentleman's Guide to Dining Etiquette 39 rules to eating like a proper gentleman. And this is courtesy of Esquire's food correspondent and in no particular order. But very particularly, our rapid fire segment today will go through all 39 points and either agree on whether the point is valid or close to valid or debatable, or whether it's downright preposterous. And as always, please take this with a grain of salt. There's always room for more discussion, but we did think
Speaker 2: that this would be a lot of fun and be more fun to do rapid fire that to really, uh, we're gonna try to limit our usual talking themselves.
Speaker 1: Alright, Daniel, are you ready?
Speaker 2: I'm ready.
Speaker 1: Okay.
Speaker 1: Number one a gentleman is never unintentionally rude.
Speaker 2: Agreed? How about a gentleman always dresses appropriately
Speaker 1: agree. Ah, gentleman never bribes a maitre d agreed.
Speaker 2: Ah, gentleman never has more than one cocktail before dinner.
Speaker 1: Debatable but a good idea. A gentleman never takes more than one minute to decide on his meal. Debatable.
Speaker 2: A gentleman never talks about golf with a woman present.
Speaker 1: Preposterous. As a female golfer, I take a fence. Ah, gentleman does not remove his shoes under the table to play footsie. Agreed. E could say debatable. Littlefoot. See? Ah
Speaker 2: gentleman does not table hop.
Speaker 1: Agreed. Ah. Gentleman does not frequent any restaurants so loud that he cannot hold a conversation with the person
Speaker 2: across from him. Agreed. A gentleman never drinks beer from a bottle at a restaurant.
Speaker 1: Debatable. Ah, gentleman does not use sugar substitutes.
Speaker 2: Preposterous. Ah, gentleman always gets up from his chair when a woman gets up from hers or approaches the table.
Speaker 1: Agree, but also debatable. In business, you want to keep things super neutral? Absolutely. A gentleman does not drink water with a lime or lemon slice in it. Preposterous! Ah
Speaker 2: gentleman never has a cell phone on the table.
Speaker 1: Agreed. Ah, gentleman never discusses the price of a meal or wine.
Speaker 2: Agreed. A gentleman never over tips.
Speaker 1: Debatable. Ah, gentleman always orders after his guests, Dio agreed, but also debatable. There could be times you
Speaker 2: might want to give some direction there as a host,
Speaker 2: a gentleman never orders. Salad is a main course.
Speaker 1: Preposterous. Ah, gentleman never applauds When the chef comes out
Speaker 2: debatable,
Speaker 2: a gentleman takes his mother out to dinner at least four times a year.
Speaker 1: Well, that's lovely. It is debatable. Alright, Flipside. A gentleman lets his father take him out to dinner at least four times a year. Also lovely. Also debatable. Definitely you. Sometimes you wanna offer to pay
Speaker 2: yourself. You can't count on Dad all the time. A gentleman does not sniff the cork, but merely glances at it to see if the vintage is the same as the bottle label.
Speaker 1: Agree. And I believe it's also to see if the wine has run up the cork. Ah, gentleman, never says more than three words about the quality of a wine being served
Speaker 2: debatable.
Speaker 2: A gentleman should always quietly dispute an error on a check with the manager.
Speaker 1: Agree
Speaker 1: A gentleman should never dance at a Greek restaurant. Disagree.
Speaker 2: Ah, gentleman should never sing karaoke in a Japanese restaurant.
Speaker 1: Debatable. Ah, gentleman never tucks his napkin into his shirt.
Speaker 2: Agreed. Ah, gentleman should send back a wine on Lee if it has gone bad or been corked.
Speaker 1: Agree 29. A gentleman should never be ashamed to ask for a doggy bag.
Speaker 2: Debatable. In business, you really don't want to do that.
Speaker 2: A gentleman never shakes his bread. Stick in the air to make a point.
Speaker 1: Agreed. Ah, gentleman never draws on the tablecloth.
Speaker 2: Agreed. Ah, gentleman never admires another man's shoes.
Speaker 1: Agreed. Ah, gentleman should never put his hand over a wine glass to indicate no more.
Speaker 2: Agreed. A gentleman never snaps his fingers to get the waiter's attention.
Speaker 1: Absolutely agree. Ah, gentleman knows the difference between a saw spoons and a soup spoon, as well as the functions of all silverware on the table.
Speaker 2: Agreed. A gentleman goes to the restroom before sitting down to dinner.
Speaker 1: Debatable.
Speaker 1: Ah, gentleman never asks a chef toe. Alter his cooking.
Speaker 2: Also debatable. Ah, gentleman always has coffee after dessert.
Speaker 1: I think that's debatable. To ah gentleman may flirt with the co check girl, but must never asked her out on a date technically agreed but debatable on multiple counts
Speaker 1: That's our rapid fire segment. I hope you had fun and let us know what you think is agreed or
Speaker 2: debatable.
Speaker 2: We like to celebrate good behavior at the Emily Post Institute, so each episode we like to do an awesome etiquette salute.
Speaker 1: Today's salute. We really wanna make sure goes out to our train. The trainer attendees, because they're all they've all graduated our program, and they're all actually going out into the world to help teach etiquette at various, uh, places and to various people. And they actually are going to be making a difference in this world. And we would just love to give them a wholehearted salute from our awesome etiquette podcast. You guys were fantastic,
Speaker 2: and we just can't. We can't emphasize enough how how important you are and your ambassadors for etiquette and we love you and the work that you do and good luck in your own communities.
Speaker 2: Social courtesy does pay, doesn't it? Thanks.
Speaker 2: Thank you for listening. Send us your questions, your etiquette salutes and your suggestions toe awesome etiquette. Emily post dot com
Speaker 1: If you like what you hear, subscribe on iTunes and leave us a review.
Speaker 2: You can find us on Facebook at Emily Post Institute on Twitter. I'm Daniel, Underscore Post
Speaker 1: and I'm Lizzy, a Post.
Speaker 2: You can also reach us via email at Awesome Etiquette at Emily Post com.
Speaker 1: Our theme music was composed and performed by Bob Wagner.
Speaker 2: Awesome Etiquette is produced in collaboration with Vermont Public Radio.
Speaker 2: Thing is Awesome Etiquette, part of the Infinite Guest network from American Public Media.
Speaker 1: The Infinite Guest Network has all kinds of podcast for you to listen to, including a new addition to the network, the soundtrack Siri's hosted by Dana Rossi. The soundtrack Siri's is a live show and podcast where people tell stories about their favorite songs. Learn more at Infinite Guest or gig.
Speaker 1: I don't know. Do you know favorite
Speaker 2: song changes all the time?
Speaker 1: Does it? Yeah, is, But what about just a song that's really important to
Speaker 2: you right now? There's a particular song that's in my mind. It's called Two Boys, and it's sang by the group's strange folk. They were a small band here in Burlington, Vermont, that my brother and I used to go here all the time when we were growing up, and the song was about two brothers two boys and they're playing in the woods and the adventures they have and the games they imagine that they play. And, um, it was always sort of our theme song or the two brothers theme song. I've been thinking about my brother. Thinking about two Boys is definitely ah, song of some significance and on the mind at the moment.
Speaker 1: So a song that is really important to me would actually be a song that I love to sing. And when I sing this particular song, there's there's just something that happens it like, comes over me. I always feel really, really fantastic about singing it, and that is Angel from Montgomery and I was really site because when I was at the Grand Point North Festival this year, um, Grace Potter actually sang that song, and it was one of those moments where this is a song that I really love to sing. It's kind of my warm up song. Whenever I'm singing with my friend, who plays guitar, it's like the one we used to always get my voice there and that song that song really, really gets me, so that's that's kind of my my always
Speaker 2: go to okay,